My second term of the MSc Strategic Marketing included a variety of highly interesting modules as well as career events, which challenged me to apply everything that I had learned so far to real-life examples.
Brand Strategy module: P&G guest lecture
For instance, our Brand Strategy Module, which was led by our Programme Director Dr Omar Merlo, included a variety of guest lectures with industry experts.
My classmates and I learned for example from Katherine Joy Newby Grant, who is a Marketing Director with Proctor & Gamble (P&G), about the importance of thinking long-term when making business decisions. She said:
People will forget a banner ad, that drove them to purchase, but the likelihood is high that they can talk to us about a P&G TV campaign we did years ago and about how it made them feel.
She also touched on how difficult it can sometimes be to prove the financial value of marketing actions and explained how Procter & Gamble dealt with this matter. By doing so, she brought up a point which was discussed with the help of several frameworks during our module and offered insight on how practitioners deal with it.
Swatch guest lecture
Also, we had the pleasure of listening to Konstantin Theile, who was responsible for the Marketing and Sales of Swatch, and who taught us about how to create a breakaway positioning and create a loyal following for your brand. Swatch, as a brand was growing extremely fast with its Swatch collectors club consisting of 50,000 members within a year.
Marketing Simulation exercise
Another module, that combined theory and practice was Marketing Decision Making, taught by Dr Sven Mikolon. In this module, we were put into teams of six students, with the task of performing a Markstrat simulation.
As part of this simulation, we became owners of a virtual company and had to make a large variety of choices with relation to concepts such as brand portfolio management, segmentation and positioning, product launch and advertising. Each team in the module started with the same resources, and it was our goal to maximise our revenue and share price over eight weeks, with decisions having to be made at least twice a week.
In the end, my team sold products to a variety of customer groups with different need profiles and distribution channels and also entered a new market. During the eight weeks, we learned not only a lot about how to make decisions in multinational teams, under time pressure and uncertainty, we also needed to critically engage with theoretical concepts such as the first mover advantage.
Overall, the modules I undertook in the second term of my MSc Strategic Marketing were able to help me to employ an entrepreneurial mindset and make stronger connections between theory and practice.